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Council to finally resurface cycle lane after backlash over fixing entire road but not the cyclepath

The backtrack comes after announcing that resurfacing of the road was “complete”, despite not fixing the “abysmal” cycle lane

A Greater Manchester council has backtracked on its decision that the roadworks were “complete” after resurfacing the entire road but apparently forgetting the cycle lane, confirming that it will resume work on the bike path this month.

Earlier this week, we reported that One Trafford, the body linking the council to contractor Amey on road maintenance projects, proudly took to social media to share photos of the “completed” works on Talbot Road, prompting local riders to fill the replies with questions along the lines of “when will the cycle lanes be resurfaced too?”

> Council criticised after resurfacing entire road... except cycle lanes

It looks like after all the backlash and negative press, the council has decided to backtrack on its decision and announced that it will now resurface the cycle lanes.

One Trafford said on Twitter: “We recently completed carriageway resurfacing works on Talbot Road between Great Stone Road and Byron Road. These works typically stretch from kerb to kerb, however, on this occasion, the scheme addressed critical failed surfacing along the road between the cycle lanes.

“The cycle lanes were installed in 18/19 and remain structurally sound. We'll be returning before the end of the month to complete surface treatment works (subject to weather conditions) on the cycleway in the locations where carriageway resurfacing took place.”

The council also announced that the surface will be painted green at junction points, adding: “We are committed to providing safe roads for all road users, whilst encouraging active travel to enable residents to walk, wheel and cycle.”

Talbot Road (@DomCycling)
The newly resurfaced Talbot road, next to the old cycling lane (image: Twitter @DomCycling)

Yesterday, Messenger reported that the surface dressing will consist of a layer of bitumen and chippings and then be rolled over to make the lanes as smooth as possible. The dressing is a preventative measure to protect the existing surface from water ingress and increase the longevity of the surface.

Despite One Trafford maintaining that the cycle lane is “structurally sound”, we saw several cyclists from the area complain about its state, calling it “abysmal” and “badly in need of improvement”.

Dom, an active travel blogger from Greater Manchester, had told that the Talbot Road route, part of the Stretford Cycleway, is popular and well used but “quite awful” after it rains. In fact, many people had told the council that the surface needed improving and the drainage issues sorting before installing the wands back in 2018.

“There have been issues with poor surface and standing water on the Stretford Cycleway since it was installed. These have been repeatedly raised with the council, who have failed to do anything about it. While Trafford Council's recently approved strategy to get more people walking, wheeling and cycling looks promising, we need to see this backed up with actions, including ensuring that maintenance money is spent fairly,” Dom said.

He added: “It's disappointing that after the recent good work the council has done installing protected cycleways on a section of Chester Road, they've carried out this resurfacing work, without addressing the cycleway that badly need improving.”

Adwitiya joined in 2023 as a news writer after completing his masters in journalism from Cardiff University. His dissertation focused on active travel, which soon threw him into the deep end of covering everything related to the two-wheeled tool, and now cycling is as big a part of his life as guitars and football. He also covers local and national politics for Voice Wales, and sometimes writes about science, tech and the environment. Living right next to the Taff trail in the Welsh capital, you can find him riding his bike on the scenic routes, fighting his urge to stop pedalling and click photographs (apparently not because he's bonking).

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Sriracha | 5 months ago

This is emblematic of how non-cyclists perceive what it is to cycle. At your typical 6-8mph on a sturdy sit-up-and-beg iron-framed mattress-saddled bike you're simply not bothered by road surface imperfections or undulations. The old road surface is more than adequate. Why waste tax-payers' money?

chrisonatrike replied to Sriracha | 5 months ago

Indeed, a common perception. Most common of course among those who have never cycled on the road - or just never cycled.

Meanwhile in the "land of sit-up-and-beg bicycles " - where rather more than 1-2% of trips involve a cycle - they "waste taxpayers' money" on ensuring the surface is smooth. How odd.

chrisonatrike replied to chrisonatrike | 5 months ago

"But we have potholes". Yes - these are most dangerous to cyclists and vulnerable road users. (Fall off then get hit by a motor vehicle).

They're even worse for those with smaller wheels (scooters and mobility vehicles).

They're caused in large part by motor vehicles. Much more so by heavier vehicles like trucks and buses but the average weight of cars is currently going up.

At least in the UK patching potholes
also seems to be a pretty short-term "fix".

Giving those not in heavy motor vehicles their own space which requires less ruggedness and won't get trashed so quickly seems a pretty obvious win. (Noting that we also don't manage the effects of tree roots well currently though...)

eburtthebike | 6 months ago

It may be structurally sound, just not fit for cycling, which is it's sole purpose.

While it's great that they are finally going to treat it, it will cost at least twice as much to do it now than when the rest was being done, and it is unlikely that the surface defects identified by many cyclists will be addressed.

stonojnr | 6 months ago

Typical, the local council did the same in Ipswich, and we've been left with sections of the cycle lane surface that are so bad now it's dangerous to ride on it at more than walking pace.

Dbloke | 6 months ago

Road down that one a few times to do various things at Bowlers, got a puncture almost every time.
Also people in cars using it to drive onto the pavement to park, last time was at night, cars parked along side of it and had to slam on the breaks really hard as someone just randomly drove across it.
Shit area to cycle 

mike the bike replied to Dbloke | 6 months ago

Road down that one a few times to do various things at Bowlers, got a puncutre almost every time.

I know it's a typo but I just love the word puncutre.  It's got that certain Frenchness necessary for cycling terminology and it trips off the tongue very well.  I shall immediately begin using it to my friends when the conversation turns to bicycling.  Without explaining its meaning, obviously.  I wonder how long before I hear one of them using it too?

Dbloke replied to mike the bike | 6 months ago

Speal cheeker didnt catfish that one

mattsccm replied to Dbloke | 5 months ago

Didn't spot "road" or "breaks" either unless they were deliberate punslaugh

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